I know this particular category is odd, but to be fair, they are all equally arbitrary. As the oldest brother, I grew up listening mostly to Classic Rock and Phish (which is another story for another day) and honestly, I didn’t fit in in middle school. So my musical awakening was really in High School and with the additional possibilities of internet spreading, music videos were a way to spread the music and honestly, since Toy Story, people had seen 3-D computer animation as a benefit and reacted in kind. Music videos became huge productions and though Michael Jackson and his cinematography will probably never be matched, this era created some great videos. Again there will be no particular order, but enjoy. (P.S.) I was in High School from 1999-2003.
1. Red Hot Chili Peppers – Californication.
Now this entire album’s videos could make the list; Otherside and Scar Tissue are both amazing, however, as a high schooler, the video game elements of this were fun and new. The graphics were definitely limited, but the video is just impressive.
2. Beastie Boys – Intergalactic
The Beastie Boys are known for their low-budget videos, think Sabotage and Fight For Your Right, but this one takes the goofiness cake. The complete opposite end of Californication, robots are made of boxes and the Beastie Boys are associated with their own unique blend of bad dancing and silly rhymes.
3. Gorillaz – 19-2000
The lead singer of Blur, Damon Alburn, created many side projects; Gorillaz is the best known of them all. The members of the band change around in real life, but are only known and represented by a series of cartoon characters that has stayed through all of their videos. I could have chosen Clint Eastwood as well, great video, but it makes too much sense. I like a good non-sequitur; like a dune buggy launching missiles at a gigantic moose. You heard me.
4. Fatboy Slim – Weapon of Choice
This video, speaking of which, is the king of non-sequiturs. Christopher Walken is sitting in a suit in the lobby of a hotel and the song starts to play on the janitor’s cart. What happens next is the greatest dance routine outside a Michael Jackson video possibly ever. The story goes that when the VMA for best dance video went to *N’Sync, they came to the stage and stated their shock and offered the award to Walken (though his video would take home six others).
5. Weezer – Keep Fishin’
One word, “Muppets.” I know when I talk about Weezer, I am opening a can of beans. For those unaware, Weezers first two albums Weezer (Blue, three of their album are self-titled so they are referred to by the color) and Pinkerton are classic of the Alternative Rock movement opposite the Grunge movement of Nirvana coming out of Seattle. With five years between the albums they are considered polished examples of the genre. However, from 1997-2000, went on hiatus to return to with Weezer (Green) which produced similar, but poppier songs like Island in the Sun and Hash Pipe; this caused a falling out with many older fans, but garnered new ones, leaving a few in between hoping this was a fluke. However, in 2002 Maladroit made people realize that Weezer had fundamentally changed. They were poppy, hit generating, and not nearly as underground. It is perhaps this context that makes the Muppet thing so weird. In the back of Rivers Cuomo’s head, he thought the Muppets are kid’s stuff and that they are silly. However, according to the interview, when they got to the set and he saw Kermit and Fozzie and Ms. Piggy, he lost it and was excited. So yes, the video is poppy and not at all Weezer’s old stuff, but it is fun and catchy. Enjoy.